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China: Citi hires Tsang in private-sector push

Citi has hired Rodney Tsang, previously Merrill Lynch’s head of China private-sector coverage, as co-head of China investment banking. Tsang will report to Farhan Faruqui, head of Asia Pacific global banking, who says of the hire: "The non-SOE [state-owned enterprise] sector in China has been growing for the past few years, and it’s an area we’re continuing to invest resources in. Rodney’s hire is an important incremental step in that direction, not only because he has good relationships and a lot of credibility with clients but because his track record in sectors including general industry, consumer and real estate complements the expertise of our existing team very well."

Although the SOEs continue to provide the main source of revenue opportunities for foreign banks in China, with the lucrative IPOs of financial institutions and M&A transactions in the natural resources sector being prime examples, the importance of the private sector is growing. Data from Dealogic, which began distinguishing between SOE and private-sector debt finance in its figures in 2008, show that bond issuance from the private sector is on the increase, with more than $1 billion being raised every month this year bar February, compared with just four such months last year.

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